No worries, Layouts and Elements are a new feature yet to be released. There is no documentation nor tutorials as of yet, but there will be.
As you correctly observed, you can't control the position of widgets before other shapes within the same zone. This is because those other shapes are actually child shapes of a Content shape (not to be confused with the Content zone). You can't cut up this
Content shape, but what you can do is override the Content shape template (found in Orchard.Core/Contents/Views) and render some global zones, for example:
@*The following line will render the Header local zone called Header, which is a shape on the Content shape (which is Model)*@
@*The following line will render the BeforeLocalContent global zone, which is a shape on the root Layout shape*@
@*The following line will render the Content local zone called Content, which is a shape on the Content shape (which is Model)*@
@*The following line will render the AfterLocalContent global zone, which is a shape on the root Layout shape*@
You would have to update your theme manifest file to include the BeforeLocalContent and AfterLocalContent zones so they become available on the Widgets screen.
I really don't like this solution, but wanted to show you this to try and get a better understanding of where zones live: the root shape of all is Layout, which contains the so-called global zones, such as Navigation, BeforeContent, AsideFirst, Content, etc.
When rendering a content item, a Content shape is created. This is not the same as the Content global zone - it is added to this global Content zone however.
The Content shape itself is a ZoneHolding shape, which means that its shape properties such as Header, Content and Footer are shapes that are zones as well, but local to the Content shape. The driver system uses Placement.info to place the shapes created by
drivers into these local zones of the Content shape. The Content shape itself is always added to the Content "global" zone on the Layout shape.
When you use the yet to be released 1.9 version, you'll be able to control the position of elements, so you could for example first place a Paragraph element, then a Slider element (to be created by you and uploaded to the gallery for use by us ;)), and then
some more paragraphs as you see fit.
As you can imagine, this will simplify this kind of scenarios.