Energy conservation is a big subject, especially for little kids, and nobody enjoys being nagged to turn off the lights. Now, there’s a little friend who’s here to help, at least in theory: Tio, a new concept by designer Tim Holley is a light switch aimed at helping kids develop good green habits at home.

Tio is a little plastic ghost that works as a light switch. Like Caspar, he starts off friendly and smiling, his belly glowing green (with ectoplasm?) If Tio is left on for more than four hours, however, he turns orange, and starts to look alarmed. If you happen to leave him on for more than eight hours, watch out: Tio gets visibly upset, turning red and frowning with disapproval.

image via Gajitz
image via Gajitz

Tio doesn’t keep your energy habits to himself, either; information from the light switch is sent directly to Tio’s computer program so the entire family can see how they’re doing. The best part? Holley’s program would let kids grow a “virtual tree” on a computer at home that gets bigger and healthier the more energy they save. Now that’s positive green reinforcement.

Tim Holley [via Gajitz]

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