Teaching boys to thrive

Posted on 17th May 2024 in Prep Schools Guide

Merchiston Castle School on how to create a positive learning environment and ensure that every child is nurtured, supported and challenged to become the very best version of themselves.


We are committed to providing a world-class education that captures imaginations and engages young minds. By making lessons interactive and inspiring, we instil a genuine interest, ignite curiosity and develop a lifelong love of learning. When boys leave us as well-rounded, ambitious, academically successful individuals, we know we have done our job.

The Individual

Our small class sizes and high teacher-to-student ratio allows for highly personalised teaching that caters to the needs of the individual. Our teachers have the time to identify and nurture each boy’s strengths and support him to reach his full potential. Supported in this way, Merchistonians adopt a growth mindset, where obstacles are embraced, and opportunities seized. Our students learn the value of resilience, determination, and faith in their abilities to succeed in all aspects of life.


The key to student success and happiness lies in emotional, mental, and physical wellbeing. By placing the utmost importance on the health and welfare of our pupils, we equip them with the tools to excel in their studies and grow. With wellbeing at its core, Merchiston ensures that students not only love coming into school each day but have the confidence and motivation to challenge themselves academically too.


While preparing students to achieve the very best, we appreciate that failure is inevitable. Whether narrowly coming second or receiving a lower mark than expected, ‘failures’ are excellent learning opportunities. Our job is to teach students how to manage this with grace, accepting the result yet remaining committed to improving. Resilience at Merchiston means adapting to an outcome, recognising there is always more to learn, and having the self-belief to try again.

Sporting Excellence

At Merchiston, with our highly experiences coaches, many of whom are experienced in representing their country in their chosen sport, participating in team sports goes beyond the thrill of competition. We believe it cultivates essential life skills that benefit our boys throughout their school years and beyond. From teamwork to camaraderie, academic success to independence, leadership, problem-solving, and mental wellbeing, team sports are a huge part of the offering at Merchiston.

Shared Goals

We believe that trophies are best won as a team and that academic success is a shared goal. This community spirit makes our school so special, with boys leaving us having made friendships that will see them through life. Simultaneously, our globally-minded culture

promotes acceptance, integrity and compassion in the boys who enter our doors and leave as fine young men. Our House Structure ensures that students soon become accustomed to looking out for each other as they would a brother. In this way, boys at Merchiston appreciate the importance of trust, respect and kindness.

“To us, Merchiston is more than just a school. It’s full of committed, passionate teachers who work hard to get the most out of our boys.” – Current Parent

This article appears in the 2024 edition of John Catt's Preparatory Schools, which you can view here: