"Culture Shock" is the forty-fourth episode of The Proud Family.
Penny's school is celebrating a cultural heritage event, where different families reveal their heritages in the gymnasium. LaCienega is dressed as a beautiful Spanish girl celebrating her quinceanera, Dijonay is dressed as a debutant from the French Quarter due to her Louisiana Creole heritage, Penny as a tribal African, and Zoey for her own German origins with alpine clothing. Once the teacher is forced to raise her voice to silence everyone, she then shows that to further help the students learn about each other's heritages, she is having each student trade places with another to experience that student's family for a week and report back on it when they are done. Dijonay is exchanged with the Chang Triplets, Zoey with Wizard Kelly Junior, LaCienega with the Gross Sisters, and Penny is exchanged with Radika Zamin, a young Pakistani girl, much to her shock.
The next morning, Penny tries to fake being sick to avoid her assignment, but Trudy catches on to her ruse and makes it clear she's going to take part whether she likes it or not. Also, when Oscar tries to remind Trudy that Penny is their daughter, not just hers, Trudy asserts her authority over him with a well-placed tiger roar to cowl Oscar into submission and re-phrase what he said back into what she said. Afterwards, when Trudy reprimands Oscar and Suga Mama over their behavior, Oscar tries to pin the blame on Suga Mama for raising him, but another well-placed tiger roar from Suga Mama sends Oscar into another whimpering cowl.
At school, Penny's friends are excited for their exchanges, save for LaCienega, who would rather quit if she wasn not on the honor roll, and refuses to trade places with Penny under the thought of hiding her beautiful face under a head scarf. Sticky tries to correct her with saying the Zamins are from Pakistan, not Afghanistan, but ends up having to insult LaCienega when she tries to pun on him. After the teacher silences everyone again to say what she wanted to say, everyone goes with their new families to begin their week of cultural exchanges.
The Gross Sisters soon arrive at the Boulevardez house and head straight for LaCienega's room, impressed at all the loot she's got and how she's been holding out on them, but when Sunset reminds them she's a cop, Nubia wisecracks back a retort that leaves Papi laughing. Meanwhile, Mr. Gross arrives back at his place with LaCienega and presents her to Mrs. Gross, who after talking a few things to her, leaves LaCienega crying at what she has to endure for a week away from her loving parents.
Dijonay is enjoying being an only child at the Chang household, but quickly learns from Mr. Chang that it is not all fun and games when she has to endure the Chang Triplets' heavy studying for school with bringing her grades up and being put in a higher level of Mathematics from what she's used to, but still manages to mince his words, much to his annoyance. As for the Chang Triplets, they find themselves having to look after Dijonay's several brothers and sisters while Mr. and Mrs. Jones head out to do some shopping/go to the movies, but they do leave the Chang Triplets with the numbers for police, fire, and paramedics as Dijonay's siblings turn to look at them with malicious grins and decide to wrestle with them.
Outside, the limo driven by Zoey's mom goes past as Wizard Kelly Junior rides up front with Zoey's mother, while Zoey enjoys herself in the back with Wizard Kelly, who reprimands Zoey for correcting him, and docks her allowance by $500, leaving her with another $500 left to spend as she sees fit, without tax deductions as the Wizard never pays taxes, leaving Zoey loving her new family for a week.
At the Proud house, Radika learns from Trudy and Suga Mama how the women have the authority in the Proud household when they see her making dinner for Oscar, like she does at home for her family, by having Oscar cook up dinner for them while Trudy and Suga Mama take Radika to the mall for some shopping, which they call as every American girl's favorite pasttime, leaving Oscar to make a mess of everything he was getting together for dinner. Meanwhile, Penny does her best to get used to life at the Zamin household, but is quickly reprimanded by Mr. Zamin when she tries to help him at chess, resulting in him losing to Radika's grandfather. When she tries speaking to Mrs. Zamin about it, she assures Penny that Mr. Zamin is happy to have her here, and presents Penny with her own headscarf that she was making for her. After telling how Pakistani women like herself want to be judged by who she is and not by how she looks, Mrs. Zamin then told that the Zamins are celebrating the Islamic holiday of Ramadan, which means they fast and do not eat anything for some time.
A couple days later at school, all of Penny's friends and those they switched places with voice their enjoyment, discomfort, or hatred of their cultural exchange, even the Gross Sisters show their enjoyment of it as Nubia speaks in Spanish to them to hand over their cash to be taken, and Gina even imitates Papi's cackle, but thanks to Penny being both broke and hungry, the Gross Sisters let them off the hook for now. As things go on and Penny learns more about Radika's family and their Islamic heritage, and having to abide by their duty to Ramadan, Penny feels as if the Zamins are unworthy her time, but after a pep talk from her school principal Mr. Webb, Penny begins to gain a better respect for the Zamins and their heritage.
Back at the Proud house, Oscar asks Radika to try his latest Proud Snacks creation, and Radika gives it a positive review, especially considering her having been on her Ramadan fasting for the last 28 days. This seems to go over well with both Oscar and Trudy as Oscar offers Radika several ideas to further improve his snacks, and Radika seems fully supportive of them.
Meanwhile, Penny finally gets a better understanding of the Zamins as she helps Mr. Zamin win a game of chess against Radika's grandfather, who accuses them of cheating, but Mr. Zamin says that he and Penny are a team. Soon enough, Penny learns that the Ramadan fasting is over, and the Zamins take her to a restaurant where they can eat to their heart's content, meeting up with Radika and the Prouds, so Penny can say some of what she learned from the Zamins to her family and meet a handsome cousin of Radika. However, when the Prouds and Zamins return to the Zamin house, they find it TP'd with a message on the garage telling the Zamins to go home to the Middle East where they belong, to the shock and disbelief of both families.
As a result of that, when Penny makes her exhibition at school regarding her experience with the Zamins, she sees that they were similar to her family as she got more and more used to them, and how they were a lot like many families in America with annoying siblings, an overprotected father, grandparents who live in front of the television, and a mother who keeps everything together. After bringing up how this should convince people not to vandalize their homes with messages saying for them to go back to their former homelands, this earns her a very nice round of applause for her exhibition.
- Ms Hightower is bad at organizing who went were.
- She switched Chang triplets and Gross sisters with only a single child each.
- Mr. Chang clearly is not aware he has no legal right to change Dijonay's academics simply because she has switched with his kids for the assignment.
- Nubia explained that Penny Proud is wearing a headscarf like the musician Erykah Badu.