CRANK IT UP
One of the most fun ways of catching predators, and a very easy way of starting out, is fishing small crankbaits. These small plastic-lipped lures dive on the retrieve to a predetermined depth, so as long as you choose the right model you can fish anywhere from the surface down to 15ft. The most useful are models that get down to about 5ft. These will work well on rivers, canals and lakes.
When targeting perch, use crankbaits with a very fast wiggle action. Choose models around 5cm-7cm long, and go for mainly bright colours. Chartreuse green, white and bronze are my favourites.