Before Greyson Michael Chance’s cover of Lady Gaga’s “Paparazzi” became a YouTube smash, the Oklahoma sixth-grader was already a star in Kelly Cheek’s classroom. “He’s an amazing student to have,” Cheek, who’s been Chance’s choir teacher at Edmond, Okla.’s Cheyenne Middle School since January, tells the Music Mix. “He’s always playing the piano in class. The kids are always wanting him to sing for them. He’s the reason why I wanted to teach, because of kids like him.”

Chance represented Cheyenne at an annual choir festival for Edmond’s five middle schools this April 12. Cheek says he was originally planning to cover 3OH!3’s “Still Around” before a last-minute switch to “Paparazzi.” “He decided about a week before…He brought that song in one day after school and sang it for me. I just said, ‘You have to do that one! It’s amazing!'”

Chance’s Gaga cover (watch it again after the jump) has made him into an overnight celeb. He’s already appeared on new fan Ellen DeGeneres’ talk show. And naturally, he’s the talk of Cheyenne Middle School. “It’s been insane,” laughs Cheek. “Our phones have been ringing off the hook. The kids are so excited, we can hardly get them to do anything but talk about Greyson.”

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