Timothy Chen and his computing class at Urban Assembly Gateway School for Technology learn basics of programming and do 3-D printing of items like hall pass.

These computer classes are for the digital ages.

Computer science teacher Timothy Chen’s classroom at the Urban Assembly Gateway School for Technology in Hell’s Kitchen provides a window into what could be the future of computer science instruction in city schools.

More than a dozen students stare intently at plasma screens while they discuss computer programming.

“They’re learning about programming in the Java language. This helps them learn the basics of programming,” said Chen. “The age that we are living in — everything is digital. It’s important to bring more people into this field.”

Classrooms like Chen’s are still unusual and less than 5% of city students are taking computer science classes in the school year that started in September.

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