Well catfish prefer fresh baits like cut bluegill , shad , shiners, chubs, and suckers. Also chicken liver, and fresh shrimp work well. You can make it simple catfishing just use the bait I mentioned , a size 1 hook , a sliding weight about 1 foot above the hook. Cast it out and let it sit .
Catfish like deeper water in the day and come into the shallow water to feed at night. I prefer night fishing but day or morning fishing is good also
here is some more info that should be easy to understand
I cut bluegill or fish across their body in pieces about an inch wide like fish steak peices bigger chunks for bigger catfish . Use a fairly large hook size 1 or bigger depending on the size and type of catfish your after, for big cats I use up to a 4/0 size hook with a bigger chunk of bait or live bait.
For flathead catfish I recommend live bait such as live bluegill or shiners.
I fish for cats on the bottom most of the time but channel cats often hit cut bluegill using a bobber , I like to have the bait 3 to 4 feet under a bobber if I am fishing with one.
I use a bottom rig with about 2 feet of leader and them use a small styrafoam float about 5 inches from the hook. This way your bait is floated about 2 feet off the bottom it works excellent.
The leader length will vary depending on the bottom . If its grassy use a longer leader . If its a Mud bottom I like a 18 inch leader from swivel to the hook. Grassy bottom 2 feet or more. I put a small float about 5 inches from the hook . This floats the bait off the bottom and cats see it easily and grab it.
You need to use the proper size hooks and sinkers for the type and size of cats your fishing for. I use a 1 oz or larger sinker when fishing with live bluegills for the big cats. And a 1/2 oz sinker for cut bait ,for channels and blue catfish. Use as small of a float as possible . Just enough to keep bait off the bottom and visible to the cats. I like the styrofoam floats . They can be cut to just the right size.
Keep a tight line and good fishing
here is a rough drawing of my catfish rig