I’m recommending that you read Po Bronson’s article from New York Magazine.
The Power and Peril of Praising Your Kids
New York Magazine – Po Bronson
As a former educator, I was also appalled by the overuse of praise in an effort to uplift student’s self-esteem. I didn’t want to use purple pens when correcting, because a wrong answer is wrong, no matter what the color. I did want to encourage my students to learn from their mistakes and not be chastised.
As a parent, I’ve shamelessly fallen into this trap. My kid is what I would consider, “spoiled”. I have rewarded and bribed him to do what I ask or rewarded him for the right answer, but not the effort taken into getting the problem solved. Good article to help remind us all that there needs to be a balance and praise placed appropriately. The goal of school is not to only get an A+ but to learn to LEARN.