I've been trying to teach my 3 and a half year old son to treat other children nicely and to try and resolve all conflicts without aggression, by talking. We've been talking about the issue and agreed on a couple of rules. Namely, that he should always wait for his turn to play with things and that instead of fighting his way through a conflict he should talk to the child he's arguing with.
Once we get to the playground, I can see him trying to follow those two rules, but he fails each and every time. Even if he waits for his turn to play, others in front of him fight over who gets to go first. If he builds something and somebody is messing up his thing, he first says that he didn't like it and then, when it doesn't help, he slaps them or hits them with a toy.
For example, the other day he was digging a large hole in the ground when some other boy came up to him and started filling the hole up with sand again. My son tried telling him to stop and that he didn't like that, but that boy ignored him and continued filling up the hole. So, my son ended up hitting him. I have always disapproved of such behavior, but I keep thinking that it is tough for him, because I cannot really think of a reliable way of resolving these types of conflicts.
If I'm telling my son not to fight and to try and resolve conflicts by talking, what I can I do if other children either don't listen to him or show him that fighting is perfectly normal?
How should I teach him to react if other children ignore his efforts to resolve conflicts peacefully?